We here at Pocket Gamer maintain our positions as lovers, not fighters.
But should we envision a full-blown riot kicking off in a zoo (rather than the streets of London) we couldn’t think of a more bizarre tactic to soothe the rampant creatures than Cervo Media has devised in Riot Rings.
Lower your batons and stow away your Molotovs, because Riot Rings asks you to fight fur with fur via an animal-flinging match-‘em-up puzzler with plenty of trimmings and polish.
I predict a riot
An array of zoo animals have bust out of their enclosures and are running riot. The only way to calm them down is to fire more animals at them until there are three-of-a-kind, causing the line to vanish.
Fortunately, whether they be monkeys, lions, or bunny rabbits, all the critters gather around into the titular rings.
If you were lucky enough to have played Zuma back when all iPods came with the ol’ clicky wheel, then you’re already halfway there with Riot Rings.
Flock and load
Firing by tapping the screen should make Riot Rings much easier than the wheel (or keys, or even mouse) made Zuma, but Cervo Media has relied on some novel game mechanics to add extra challenge.
Each ring comes with a lock and key at either end. Firing too many animals onto a ring without matching any up will cause the key to enter the lock. This spells doom, so weighing up your options carefully is a must.
There’s also the occasional boss stage. These take the form of massive bees that require a machine gun-style tap frenzy to clear from the stage.
Burning ring of fur
There are power-ups to utilise at various stages, including a stun dart that slows down the ring's movement and a handy rhino that charges around the screen obliterating any animals in his path.
There's even a missile that burns up animals for quick and easy dispatch (think Wile E. Coyote).
Riot Rings oozes cuddly charm. The backgrounds are vivid and colourful and the animals themselves are adorably animated. It’s massive, too, boasting 101 levels from launch, which should keep you busy until the promised update.
There are plenty of puzzle games on iPhone, many of them also resembling Zuma, but Riot Rings is a fun take on the formula with enough innovation and sufficiently attractive presentation to make it stand out.